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BIS Cosgrove Accountants Gold Coast & Brisbane

Common Mistakes People Make on Their Tax Return

Every year, the ATO makes thousands of dollars in audits relating to mistakes people make when lodging their taxes. The tax process can be very complicated, and the cause of most tax mistakes is simply confusion or a lack of awareness of regulations. It is important to be aware of these common mistakes so that you can avoid making them yourself and make the most of your tax return. If you are struggling to file your taxes, it may also help to seek the advice of tax accountants Gold Coast. Here are the biggest mistakes Australians make on their tax returns, year after year.

They don’t provide evidence for all of their claims.

It’s important that you save the receipts from all purchases or expenses that can be claimed on your tax return. Without the receipts, you can only claim up to $300 worth of deductions for work expenses. If you submit your claims without a receipt, you won’t get the full return that you are entitled to.

They use estimates or incorrect math when calculating their income.

There are times when making an educated guess is okay, but calculating your tax return definitely isn’t one of them. Many people just give a ballpark figure when stating their income, which could get you into serious trouble with the ATO if you are audited. Another common mistake many people make is not double-checking their math. Take an extra half hour to go through everything with a calculator – it will definitely be worth your while. When we file tax returns, they are all cross checked to ensure that everything is entered correctly, preventing potentially costly mistakes.

common mistakes people make on their tax return
It is very important to double check your tax return before you lodge it to ensure that everything is correct.

They don’t lodge their return on time.

It is very important to stick to the ATO’s lodging deadlines, regardless of your tax situation. Many people avoid lodging their taxes on time because they can’t pay what they owe, or they just don’t keep track of the dates and miss it without realising. Make a note of the tax deadline on your calendar so you won’t forget, and start working on your return well ahead of time to make sure you get it right. Don’t stress too much if you can’t pay everything you owe right away. You will be able to negotiate a payment plan with the ATO if necessary.

They mis-claim rental properties.

If you own a rental property, you need to be incredibly careful when claiming your rental property deductions. The deductions should only apply to the period of the time when the property was available for rent, and you cannot include any time when you allowed friends or family to stay there for free. This is one topics that is definitely worth consulting with a professional about, just to make sure you get all your boxes checked.

Have you filed your tax return for this year already? The due date for lodgement is approaching us fast. Give us a call today.